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I have been my wife's POA for over about two years now. She recently was placed (April 2018) in a nursing home and her existing Medicaid was upgraded to cover her. Until this time as POA I would transfer funds from her bank account (only her name on that account) and put those funds into my account (only my name on the account) to use for continued expenses such as rent, bills etc. I assume that they now become part of my assets. Now that she is officially on the proper Medicaid, the nursing home she is in is telling me there is an outstanding balance of almost $5,000. Ever since my wife has been on any type of Medicaid, I have had a Spousal Refusal letter on file with both Medicaid and the with the nursing home when my wife was admitted. Surrendering her Social Security has caused a bit of a hardship. If I have to pay that $5,000, it would case a major hardship. My wife has no other assets outside of her bank account, Am I responsible, even with the spousal refusal on file, for that outstanding nursing home bill? Thank you.

You need to talk to Medicaid. When there is a Community spouse, it has to be determined what money will be used for the NH spouses care and how much is needed for the other spouse to live. I would assume that when u filed, you listed both your accounts. Whatever money they determined as hers has to be 2k or under. Once she is in a NH, what is considered hers cannot be used to pay bills. Only for her personal needs.
Because of her change, maybe there is some mixup. Talk to the NH they should be able to help. If talking to them and Medicaid gets too confusing, then consult a lawyer versed in Medicaid.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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Hman3133 Jan 6, 2019
Thank you for your info...unfortunately it is the Nursing Home that is demanding money. They consider her money as "earned" money. However if it is "income" she has that is considered "earned" I would think that is "earned income" which boit the IRS and Medicaid consider as "unearned income" which is untouchable. It is confusing.
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You may be responsible, depending how much money you transferred out of her account.   Medicaid would have calculated your spousal allowance.  Read the papers thoroughly and PLEASE see an elder law attorney.
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Reply to pamstegma
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You need to contact an elder law attorney. Medicaid will not impoverish you. Why is the money transfer not going directly to the nursing home?
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Reply to gladimhere
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Hman3133 Jan 5, 2019
The approval was just concluded recently (over the last two months). Prior to that her check was direct deposited. I have since signed over the direct deposit to the nursing home. Thank you for the advice...I will do so...if it becomes necessary.
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